Is amoxicillin effective in the treatment of acute sinusitis (sinus infection)?

Updated: Mar 01, 2018
  • Author: Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

A study by Garbutt et al evaluated the effect of amoxicillin treatment over symptomatic treatments for adults with clinically diagnosed acute sinusitis. In a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of 166 adults with uncomplicated, acute sinusitis patients received a 10-day course of either amoxicillin (85 patients) or placebo (81 patients). On day 3 of treatment, there was no difference in improvement between placebo-takers and those prescribed antibiotics. On day 7, the antibiotic group reported a slight improvement, but that edge disappeared by day 10, when 80% of patients in both groups reported they felt better or cured. [42]

The reduced efficacy of amoxicillin led the Infectious Diseases Society of America to generate new guidelines for the treatment of acute rhinosinusitis. These guidelines recommend amoxicillin-clavulanate over amoxicillin as empiric antimicrobial therapy in adults and children with acute bacterial rhinosinusitis. [43]


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